Speed demons taking to Otways trails

Forrest Mountain Bike and Cycling Club members Jeff Fox, Sandy Maxwell, Quinton Desmond, Andrew Prossor, Carl Moloney and Jessica Douglas.

COLAC district speed demons will take to Forrest’s trails this weekend to contest an annual mountain bike marathon.

Kona Odyssey officials said about 40 district riders made up the pool of almost 2000 riders who would put their bodies on the line in the race on Saturday.

Forrest Mountain Bike and Cycling Club’s Sandy Maxwell, who will contest the event’s arduous 100-kilometre ride for the third time, said the route’s tough nature lured riders.

“It’s just such a big challenge to do, just to say you’ve competed let alone finish it is quite a big thing,” he said.

“For me, when I first rode in the 100 I did it in seven hours and seven minutes and I’d like to do better so that’s why I come back.”

The 44-year-old is also one of about a dozen Forrest club riders who hit the trails each Thursday in training, but admitted riders needed to spend more time to prepare themselves for a 100-kilometre ride.

He also hits the training track each Tuesday and Thursday morning for an hour and a half as well as additional rides in evenings and on weekends.

“I used to be more involved in road and track cycling and about five years ago I tried to get back into it – I saw a couple of mountain bikers belting it out in the bush and thought ‘that looks like fun’, I’ve been doing it ever since,” Maxwell said.

Race organiser Rapid Ascent’s Chris Ord said riders had already snapped up the extra 150 spots in the popular 50-kilometre race after the 650 places sold out more than a month ago.

Ord said 206 of the 1000 places remained for the 100-kilometre event, while there were 117 of the 250 places in the less-difficult 15-kilometre race.

Interested riders can visit http://www.rapidascent.com.au/konaodyssey to enter.

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